Wednesday, June 27, 2007
This is a video where the desktop metaphor is taken literally for computers. You have move documents around on the desk as if they were real things, using a physics engine. While, neat, I don't think it's entirely the right way to go. This method is only good if you can see a preview of what the document is at a glance. Therefore, for something like photos, it makes sense. But for documents, you often can't distinguish between documents just from a preview. So unless there is also a smooth zoomable interface, I don't think it would be too useful for documents.
The only reason we sort or organize anything on our desk (or otherwise) is so that we can perform search later on. There is no need to sort if there is a default search box as an interface. Therefore, I think what would really be neat is if the documents sort themselves into rankings, or into groups based on what you typed in a floating search text field.
That said, I can see definitely see applications for this technology for augmented reality though. Being bombarded by virtual screens and documents would make anyone feel overwhelmed. Bumptop physics can help lower the information overload for future augmented reality interfaces.